At PoK-rally, Imran Khan says Kashmir events will 'provoke' Muslims
On Friday, Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan slammed India, again, for revoking Article 370, withdrawing the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and putting the border state under unprecedented security cover. But this time, rather than issuing nuclear war threats, Khan said Muslims around the world were watching Kashmir closely. He added once the curbs are lifted, there will be a "reaction".
The rally, organized in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), was part of Pakistan's government campaign to hold an event every week to "support" Kashmiris. Despite India repeatedly saying that Kashmir is an internal matter, rhetoric from Pakistan haven't stopped since August 5, the day when the historic decision was taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Centre.
Khan's "big jalsa" was attended by Shahid Afridi, the former captain of the Pakistani cricket team, and showbiz stars like Javed Sheikh, Shan, Humayun Saeed, Maya Ali, and Sahir Ali Bagga. Like Khan, all these personalities also slammed the restrictions imposed in the valley.
About the lockdown, Khan said, "I want to tell the world that Modi's actions will have a reaction when the curfew is lifted. The Muslims in India will react and the Muslims around the world will react." He added many countries aren't talking about "marginalization" because of trade ties with India but "people are closely watching the Indian atrocities inflicted on Kashmir".
"What is happening in Kashmir is against humanity. For 40 days, our Kashmiri brethren are under curfew... I want to tell Narendra Modi that what he is doing in Kashmir, only a coward can do. 9 lakh Indian soldiers have locked down Kashmiris in their homes," Khan added.
Addressing the gathering, Khan made over a dozen references to PM Modi and mentioned RSS at least half-a-dozen times. He said RSS has "deep-rooted hate" for Muslims and wants to "avenge the past". He claimed India was pushing people into extremism. "People will rise against India, and it's not just about Indian Muslims, there are 1.25 billion Muslims around the world," he went on.
"By oppressing Kashmiris, Modi is sending out a message to 20 crore Muslims in India that they can only live as second-class citizens in Hindustan. With no rights, they will be treated like animals and will be lynched in broad daylight for eating meat," Khan said.
Interestingly, Khan also asked the attendees if they were ready to march towards the LoC. When they nodded in agreement, he asked them to wait for his "signal". "First, let me go to the UN and world leaders and advocate the case of Kashmir. Let me tell them that if this issue is not resolved, the entire world will bear the impact," he added.
To note, both Khan and PM Modi are scheduled to speak at the United Nations General Assembly on September 27. Though India chose to not say anything on Khan's words, sources told IE he was desperate. "This is a desperate call by the Pakistan Prime Minister since his government has not been able to gather any support so far at the international stage," the person added.
"Imran Khan's rally in Muzaffarabad (PoK) has been a flop show, people were loaded in trucks from Abbottabad and Rawalpindi for the rally. People in PoK have boycotted the rally completely," activist Amjad Ayub Mirza told ANI.